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Home > USA > New Mexico > Santa Fe > Inn of the Turquoise Bear

Inn of the Turquoise Bear

Inn of the Turquoise Bear, an historic bed and breakfast on the old santa fe trail.

The Inn of the Turquoise Bear occupies the home of Witter Bynner (1881-1968), who for decades was a prominent citizen in Santa Fe, actively participating in the cultural and political life of the city. Noted as a poet, translator and essayist, Bynner was a staunch advocate of human rights, especially of Native Americans and other minorities.

Bynner's rambling adobe villa, constructed in Spanish-Pueblo Revival style from a core of rooms that date to the mid-1800's, is considered one of Santa Fe's most important historical buildings.

With its signature portico, tall pine trees, magnificent rock terraces, and gardens filled with lilacs, wild roses, and other flowers, the Inn offers guests a bucolic retreat close to the center of Santa Fe.

The celebrity guest list of the Bynners included D.H. Lawrence, Willa Cather, Ansel Adams, Igor Stravinsky, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Robert Frost, W.H. Auden, Stephen Spender, Aldous Huxley, Clara Bow, Errol Flynn, Rita Hayworth, Lynn Riggs, Christopher Isherwood, Carl Van Vechten, Martha Graham, Robert Oppenheimer, Georgia O'Keeffe, Mary Austin, Willard Nash, Thornton Wilder, J.B. Priestly - and many others.

Ralph Bolton & Robert Frost, the owners of the Witter Bynner Estate, have faithfully restored this magnificent property. Their goals - as innkeepers and as custodians of the home and land that Bynner loved - are to rekindle the spirit of excitement, creativity and hospitality for which this home was renowned in the past, to protect, restore and extend the legacy of its famous creator, and to provide their guests with the experience of a unique setting that captures the essence of traditional Santa Fe.

They look forward to the privilege of serving as your hosts during your visit to Northern New Mexico.

Bed and Breakfast Rooms

Edna Millay - Named for Edna St. Vincent Millay, who was once engaged to Bynner. A pleasant room with a view across the grounds to the Old Santa Fe Trail. Queen bed, kiva fireplace, viga ceilings, and saltillo tile floor. Semi-private bath with shower. Opens onto small courtyard.

Willa Cather - Named for the writer of the most famous novel about Santa Fe, New Mexico, Death Comes for the Archbishop who was a friend of Bynner and a visitor to his home. Average size room with queen bed, kiva fireplace, and saltillo tile floor. Shares bath with the Millay Room across the entryway.

Ansel Adams - The famous photographer was a longtime friend of Bynner who frequently partied in this house and took photos of Bynner and his rambling adobe home. Queen size bed, saltillo tile floor, private bath with tub and shower.

Shaman - Very large room with king size bed. Polished brick floor, viga beams, sitting area, bookcases, and fireplace. Long built-in bench beneath an expansive window that overlooks the lush grounds. Private bath with tile shower. Small refrigerator. Native American decor. Originally Bynner's study built for solitude, writing, and contemplation.

Igor Stravinsky - Named for the composer who made the Santa Fe Opera famous. A frequent visitor to Santa Fe. Stravinsky slept in this house. Originally built as lodging for Rita, Bynner's housekeeper. Queen bed, kiva fireplace and windows looking out on tree-shaded patios. Private bath with tub and shower.

Spud Johnson - Separate from the main building, this room was once the carriage house. Decorated in a Western cowboy motif. Queen bed, kiva fireplace and saltillo tile floors. Fully handicapped accessible, adjacent to the parking area. Features include a portal with a brick floor. Private bath with large, tiled shower.

Named for the writer and editor of The Laughing Horse, who was Bynner's secretary/companion before he was lured to Taos by Mabel Dodge Lujan.

O. Henry - Average-sized room with queen bed, kiva fireplace, viga beams, and wood floor with area rugs. Private bath with shower. Named for the famed short-story writer whose work was edited by Bynner when they lived in New York. The sale of three short stories by O. Henry paid for the construction of several rooms in the house.

D.H. Lawrence - Suite named for Bynner's friend and traveling companion on an extended trip to Mexico. Lawrence spent his first night in an American home in this house and was a frequent guest of Bynner. Bedroom with separate sitting area, kiva fireplace and wide plank floors.

Balcony overlooks interior courtyard with rustic staircase leading to the courtyard. Queen-sized bed with additional sofa bed in sitting area. Private bath with tile shower.

Georgia O'Keeffe - Sharing an interest in Chinese art and culture, Bynner and Georgia O'Keeffe, New Mexico's most illustrious painters, were longtime friends. Very large room with kiva fireplace, sitting area, vigas, bookcases, and pine floor. King size bed. Twin sofa sleeper, small refrigerator. Private bath with tub and shower.

Witter Bynner & Robert Hunt - A two room suite.
The Witter Bynner is a spacious, second-floor room which may be rented alone or, in combination with the Robert Hunt Room, as a two-room suite. Since access to the Hunt Room, named for Bynner's companion of more than 30 years, is through the bathroom used by guests in the Witter Bynner Room, the Hunt Room is never sold separately.

The Witter Bynner Room has a large fireplace, a king size bed, viga beams, hardwood floor and area rugs, a sitting area with a large sofa facing the fireplace. Attached to this room is a balcony with gorgeous views of the gardens, Santa Fe, and the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

Originally Bynner's study. The Hunt Room was Bynner's bedroom. Moderate size, king or twin bed, kiva fireplace, hardwood floor with area rugs and Chinese decor reflecting Bynner's interest in Asia. The Bynner-Hunt bathroom has a shower and tub.

The entire B-B Inn is available for tour groups and special events such as weddings, corporate board meetings, reunions, workshops, retreats and professional meetings. Enquire about rates.

At a Glance

* Six blocks to the Plaza
* Walking distance to Santa Fe's museums, galleries, shops, outstanding restaurants & cultural events
* Close to Santa Fe Opera, skiing, hiking, horseback riding, rafting, & Pueblo communities
* An acre of terraced gardens, old stone benches, meandering flagstone paths & soaring ponderosa pines, enclosed by adobe walls & coyote fences
* Eleven guest rooms/suites with southwest style
* Private entrances & romantic courtyards
* Kiva fireplaces & viga ceilings
* Expanded continental breakfast
* Sunset refreshments
* Phones, televisions & VCRs in each room
* Superior amenities - robes, flowers, fruit
* Extensive video & book libraries
* Inviting public rooms for quiet conversation, reading, relaxing, & listening to soft music
* Complimentary off-street parking

Contact Details

Address: 342 East Buena Vista Street
Santa Fe
NM 87501-4423
Telephone 505.983.0798

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This page was last updated: 12 July 2013

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